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    Rather patronising and quite annoying, darling.
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    I'm a man who works in a shop and as such every single female customer who is even slightly older than me, or thinks they're older than me, calls me 'love', 'sweetheart', or 'darling' every single day.

    And I just know that if I call any of these people 'darling' back I'll be sacked for harassment, even though all the female staff do it too. Staggering double standard tbh. I wouldn't dare even compliment a woman on her new hairdo lest I face the wrath of a complimented woman.

    So yes, I find the word very offensive.
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    It completely depends on tone and context. That applies to any word. No word is offensive in itself. How you use it can make it offensive.

    If people are saying you are being offensive, i would listen to that feedback.
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    In a debate, yes, I'd see it as an attempt to demean somebody. In polite conversation I see no issue
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    In my opinion the person to whom it is said to if first important, then the context in which is used comes second.

    is the person you're addressing someone you know in an intimate relationship whether romantic or simply platonic. If you have answered yes to this question then you may get away with it. what context are you using "darling" is it to undermine the individual or is it meant in a good manner.

    if you're speaking to a professional/ someone you know in an intimate relation (either of the above) in a professional situation, then keep it professional. that is not the time nor place for that.

    personally on the last note i despise being sexually harassed, yes, thats what you are doing when you're seeking someone's attention that they dont want. dont be calling my darling or baby when i dont know you from Adam, or even if i know you haven't granted you permission to call me that.

    and to end from the situation you've just described, you should refrain from doing that to individuals.
    if they say its offensive they probably feel uncomfortable with you speaking to them in that manner.


    take heed and stop
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    I didn't realize i was patronising the people i call them darling or sweetheart but apparently i am b/c they go off when i say it especially during arguments. i call myself being nice by using this term of endearment but after reading these comments i can see why i piss them off. apparently i'm a sarcastic person and didn't realize it until now. oh well i'm sure i'll continue to piss other people off when they get me in a foul mood they'll continue to be called darlin whether they like it or not.
 
 
 
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